By Peter Brown

A better half to Medieval English Literature and tradition, c.1350-c.1500 demanding situations readers to imagine past a narrowly outlined canon and standard disciplinary limitations. A ground-breaking choice of newly-commissioned essays on medieval literature and tradition. Encourages scholars to imagine past a narrowly outlined canon and standard disciplinary limitations. displays the erosion of the normal, inflexible boundary among medieval and early sleek literature. Stresses the significance of making contexts for analyzing literature. Explores the level to which medieval literature is in discussion with different cultural items, together with the literature of different international locations, manuscripts and faith. contains shut readings of frequently-studied texts, together with texts by way of Chaucer, Langland, the Gawain poet, and Hoccleve. Confronts many of the controversies that workout scholars of medieval literature, corresponding to these attached with literary conception, love, and chivalry and struggle.

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Extra info for A Companion To Medieval English Literature and Culture c.1350 - c.1500 (Blackwell Companions to Literature and Culture)

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The choices made by the anthologists tell large groups of people what they should read, and although editors do not always argue overtly for their choices, a theoretical stance is usually implicit in the selections. Derek Pearsall explains that a comprehensive anthology must include ‘larger samples of what is best [in the writing of a period] and smaller samples of what is more representative’ and that for reader as well as anthologist ‘the two criteria are constantly in operational conflict and in question’ (Pearsall 1999: xv).

H. du Boulay and Michael J. Bennett, accounts which, rather than stressing social deference, focus on the importance of personal ambition and of individual social mobility, both within and between the different classes and ranks of society (du Boulay 1970: 79; Bennett 1983: 247). Underlying much of the social mobility of the late medieval period was the high mortality resulting from regular outbreaks of epidemic disease. 25 million or less. Negative replacement rates for the population as a whole meant that places on the higher rungs of the social ladder were now waiting to be filled.

Over the course of the century English writers might have grown more secure in their national identity, but they remained insular in temperament. Patricia Clare Ingham, in her Sovereign Fantasies: Arthurian Romance and the Making of Britain, uses psychoanalysis to query the notion of ‘Englishness’. Focusing on the particular example of the ‘diametrically opposed . . political agendas’ that informed medieval British responses to the Arthur legend, Ingham shows that ‘the meaning of British sovereignty in Arthur’s story .

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